This year marks the 50th anniversary of Loretta’s arrival on the music scene with her 1960 debut single, “I’m a Honky Tonk Girl.” Almost on the exact date of her golden anniversary in show business, the Recording Academy gave her its Lifetime Achievement award, presented on January 31, 2010.
Loretta Lynn signed to Decca Records in 1961, and her chart debut came with 1962’s “Success.” It became the first of her 51 top-10 hits and led to an invitation to join the Grande Ole Opry cast later that year, along with Patsy Cline. She sang a series of sassy domestic ditties with her childhood hero, Ernest Tubb. As a solo artist, she hit her stride with “Wine, Women and Song” (1964) and “Happy Birthday” (1965), both of them feisty, don’t-step-on-me numbers.
Lynn has won many awards since 1967, including various Female Vocalist of the Year awards and several Duet of the Year awards for her work with Conway Twitty. She has won a number of BMI songwriting honors, Gold record plaques and in 1972 became the first woman in history to win the Country Music Association’s Entertainer of the Year award.
With the 2010 release of the multi-artist album Coal Miner’s Daughter: A Tribute to Loretta Lynn, a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award and a re-release of her autobiography, it is the perfect time for Loretta Lynn to head back onto the road. She still, however, continues to remain humble. “I ain’t a star – a star is something up in the night sky,” says Loretta Lynn. “People say to me, ‘You’re a legend.’ I’m not a legend. I’m just a woman.”